Saturday, May 13, 2006

I fully sympathize with Hendrik Hertzberg's sentiments in this week's New Yorker. And had the jurors in Zacarais Moussaoui's trial sentenced him to death, it would have turned into the most highly visible state-sanctioned execution the world has seen in a long time (I have not done my research on that, btw), further solidifying the image in the minds of the rest of the civilized world of Americans as a short-sighted, revenge-wielding, Nancy-Grace-obsessed mob.

I'm not sure but Hertzberg seems to romanticize this jury, speaking of them as a whole when he praises their final decision, giving the impression that they all came to the non-death sentence as a group. Well I think it is worth noting that that's not how it happened at all. According to that linked article (read through the end for the bit documenting the post-trial statements made by a couple of the jurors) we were spared the disgusting spectacle of Moussaoui's execution by one lone, anonymous juror who did not see eye to eye with the rest of the jurors.

The jury's forewoman states that she voted for the death sentence "because she believed the government proved its case." This reminded me that I tend to forget that a juror who opts for a life sentence over a death sentence is presumably doing so not because he or she disagrees with the death penalty on principle, but because the prosecution did not prove its case sufficiently.

Which brings us to the fact that sometimes a criminal's life comes down to how well certain attorneys perform their job. Ahh, Lady Justice, you little vixen!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006


I wonder if Keith is suffering through any delerium tremens or nicotine fitting during his stay under the weather. I had a nice time on the train this evening imagining the concessions the hospital would have to make. Did the New Zealand doctors have to negotiate with his legal representation in order to obtain permission to take the feathers out of his hair? I imagine he has had to undergo a rather radical change in his hairstyle what with the drilling that took place in his skull. I wonder what sort of headdress he'll wear upon his return to the "A Bigger Bang" Tour '06

I also wonder if Grant McLennan had heard about Keith's fall. The effect the Go-Betweens have had on the grand artistic vision of at least a couple of the Nation Sacks cannont be overestimated.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Sly O'Bedlam

In fact, there's a lot to talk about. For instance, Sly Stone appeared on the Grammy Awards last night, first public performance in 17 years. He was resplendent in a 2 foot tall golden mohawk, gold lame capecoat, an enormous white belt buckle with the word SLY wriggling across it, and a nasty case of osteoperosis. Or maybe it was just evidence of the pressure he probably put on himself, the pressure that led him to abandon the Family Stone in 1975 or so, that seems to have turned him into some sort of Funk Golem. He still had a voice, and when he took care to actually use it on a few lyrics, it was almost frighteningly on key, piercing and direct. But those moments were few and he left the stage before the song was even over. Perhaps he made an early exit after realizing he'd been tricked into sharing the stage with some of the flimsiest pop performers this world has ever known. Having Maroon 5 and Joss Stone sing an ear-splittingly forced medley of your tunes is no way to make a comeback. I hope the whole experience acts as some sort of inspiration for him to take another stab at re-entering the world, but on his own terms.

New York city is finally cold again thank god, proper winter weather making me feel a lot less like the apocalypse is waiting for me in the elevator. Doesn't Shakespeare always foreshadow tragedy with odd climatological change? Poor Sly, get thee to the hovel.

Friday, January 27, 2006


Finally something worth mentioning. This new YouTube service is quickly yielding fantastic results. To wit: this washed out clip of PiL in 1980 on American Bandstand doing two cuts from the one album of theirs that actually made good on Lydon's wish to commit a full-on breach of security in rock n roll's ever-evolving state of total lockdown, "SECOND EDITION." It's everything you want out of rock n roll: Lydon using his cred to give his new radical vision a very public platform, running through the traditional audience/performer relationship as if it had never existed, hinting at violence, literally dragging the antsy teenagers onto the stage because who are we kidding? we are just lipsynching, why would you want to sit in your seats and watch that, just come down here and participate in this supremely fucking wobbly dub music.

The audience catches on pretty fast. By the end of "Careering," whether prodded by a producer or not, the audience is screaming for more. And at so many points Lydon looks so eerily like a young and newly electric Bob Dylan, jubilant like a man who has discovered the delights of a nice suit of clothes made just for you, and screw all that slumming bohemian costumery I had so stupidly stuck myself with up til now. Amazing to see such radical music on such a public platform and to see it embraced. So wonderful it is hard not to yearn to have been a teenager at that time, discovering something so fresh.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Just A Little Sex...

M Turner
Radio Show

Mission of Burma- That's When I Reach for My Revolver (live)- the horrible truth...
Steely Dan- Reelin' In The Years- Citizen Dan
AC/DC- Bad Boy Boogie- You Want Blood...
Creedence Clearwater Revival- Up Around The Bend- Cosmo's Factory
Psychedelic Furs- President Gas- Hits
Thin Lizzy- Romeo And The Lonely Girl- Jailbreak
Jens Lekman- Rocky Dennis' Farewell Song- Oh You're So Silent Jens
Human League- Human- Best Of
Coldplay- Speed Of Sound- X & Y
Loose Fur- So Long- S/T
Bread- Hooked On You- Lost Without Your Love
Clint Holmes- Playground In My Mind- (45 single)
Linda Ronstadt- Lose Again- Hasten Down The House
Donald Fagen- Century's End- Bright Lights, Big City Soundtrack
Velvet Underground- Oh! Sweet Nuthin' (early version)- Loaded (Fully Loaded Version)
Red Krayola- (?)- God Bless The...
Lighthouse- Mountain Man- Lighthouse
Husker Du- Eight Miles High- (single 45)
Byrds- Eight Miles High- Best Of
Aerosmith- Sick As A Dog- Rocks
Bob Dylan- Leopard-Skin Pill Box Hat (alternate take)- No Direction Home
Marmoset- Pretty Girl (Pity)- Today, It's You
The Saints- (I'm) Stranded- (I'm) Stranded
Jawbreaker- Do You Still Hate Me?- 24 Hour Revenge Therapy
Screeching Weasel- Johnny, Are You Queer?- How To Make Enemies...
Black Flag- Rat's Eyes- Slip It In
St. Vitus- Bitter Truth- Mournful Cries
Deep Purple- Flight Of The Rat- In Rock
Cinderella- Nobody's Fool- (single 45)
Angel City- Long Night- Night Attack
Smacks!- Where're The Drugs- Here Lieth...
ZZ Top- Sharp Dressed Man- Eliminator
Nirvana- Oh The Guilt- Sliver
Neil Young- Cortez The Killer- Zuma
Eyes And Arms Of Smoke- Pioneers Of Sleep- Religion Of Broken Bones
Ocean Blue- Mercury (CD Single)
Bonnie Prince Billy- Wolf Among Wolves- Summer In The Southeast
Patti Smith- Kimberly- Horses
Guided By Voices- Wished I Was A Giant- Vampire On Titus
Ennio Morricone- Corsa Sui Tetti- Crimes and Dissonance
Konono No1- Lufuala Ndonga- Congotronics



Thursday, December 15, 2005

Paul, I Hope You Don't Mind

Everyone come look at what's happening over at the American Book Congress. For background, see this specific. Please feel free to offer participation, leave a comment here or there with contact information and access will be granted.

Heavy Saxons's Eve

"the da-dada-dum-da's are needed to soak it all up..."

This from writer Carl Wilson's long piece on the forthcoming "Destroyer's Rubies." Have now heard 3 tracks and am suffering extreme reactions. Every verse taking flight as a consequence of Bejar's immense confidence. The vibe of this band he's got together, the production en general, it is almost unbearably appealing. A group of wizened older gentlemen gone quite to seed and who play it as it lies, loose and fat.

How to proceed in the face of something so evidently supreme? A pathetic question but it troubles me nonetheless. The taste I have had so far - this is one of the richest things I've heard in a long time. The bitterness of Destroyer's past is still there but now seems to have been subsumed into the pure pleasure of sonics. There's just no hesitation here, and that quality has direct emotional consequences. And it confirms a world within a human.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

50,000 Steps In Boots Too Big

OH THE SMELL of bookbags drying from the wet snow that stopped and melted upon greeting! We are in the throes of those first exalted weeks of active winter where moisture turns to mold and we turn not up our noses to the growth but instead make accomodation! When we should work hard to replace curses with praise!

but watch out! That seeming surface that stretches several feet out from the curb is not pavement but instead the melt-off topped with municipal salts! It looks like god's own oil & chip poured just for Nation Sack's pedestrian. But you step and your toe is submerged and you will remember your surreal mistake like a finger dipped in a frozen cloud. Your skin will see fit to talk to you until you have seen fit to give up on your capital methods and finally RETURN HOME to where it is warm, where you are warmly tasked, where each and every task, completed, warms.

And the headline upon which I've been meditating upon since yesterday...City Eyes Taking Blaze Ma's Kids...I can barely speak but to say...

Take this, just once, and try to fit it into your day, into each step you take through this city.